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More Brickyard 400 Qualifying Quotes

1 August 1997

NASCAR Winston Cup Series
Busch Pole Qualifying 
Brickyard 400
Indianapolis Motor Speedway
July 31, 1997


RICK MAST (#75 Remington Arms Ford Thunderbird) - Qualified 17th - "I know 
all the drivers will be complaining that the track's a lot slicker than it 
is. The car was a little bit loose in qualifying as hot as it got."

JEFF GORDON (#24 DuPont Automotive Refinishes Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - 
Qualified 24th - "I'm trying not to go hoarse. I've been talking a lot this 
week. It wasn't quite what we were looking for. Our worse case scenario 
during qualifying was whether or not it got tight off. And it got tight off. 
It looks like the track has caught a lot of guys off guard and it caught us 
off guard. We picked up over a second in the last practice. We're starting to 
get where we need to be. We'll find out what happens after qualifying and 
we'll go to work on the race setup."

DARRELL WALTRIP (#17 Auto Parts America Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 
4th - "What a thrill! We just wanted to qualify decent. We didn't really 
think we'd be on the pole or anything and we won't be. There will be cars 
that will beat that but man....they know that we're here anyway."

just another good indication why you need two cars. Rich came in and said, 
'DW, the car was this way, the track was this way.' A couple of minor changes 
really helped. So he's good and we are, too. I'm so pumped. This is going to 
be a great weekend. I can't wait. I'm just really excited!"

LAKE SPEED (#9 Delta Faucet Ford Thunderbird) - Did not qualify; 32nd fastest 
- Crashed his primary car during Wednesday practice. Qualified a back up 
car. - "When you had a car running as good as we were yesterday in practice. 
We had really never even made a full-blown qualifying attempt at that time. 
To lose that car was really devastating to us. We've got a back up car and 
the guys are working hard trying to get it up to speed. We're not quite there 
yet. We'll keep working at it. This is a good race team and we'll be able to 
come back and have a good lap tomorrow."

STEVE GRISSOM (#41 Kodiak Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 19th - "That 
wasn't too bad. The guys on the Kodiak team have done an awesome job and 
prepared a great car with super motors. The track has changed a little bit 
from when we were out this morning. They did a great job compensating for it. 
I just would have liked to have done a little bit more. But still, it's a 
good lap for us and from here we'll just see what happens and where we wind 
up. Darrell (Waltrip) and I talked just before I went out. I kinda knew what 
the track was like for me and for him to go out and run a good lap like he 
did was pretty amazing. Now Dale Jarrett's come in since and beat him. These 
guys are pretty awesome. It's neat to be a part of it and to be here at 

TERRY LABONTE (#5 Kellogg's Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Did not qualify; 31st 
fastest - "We were a little bit loose. We made some adjustments on it but we 
didn't do it quite enough. I knew when I left the pits and I was loose coming 
off (turn) two I was going to be in trouble. It's a good car and I think it 
will be good in the race. We just missed it a little bit today."

RON BARFIELD (#92 New Holland Ford Thunderbird) - Qualified 23rd - 
Crashed during Thursday practice. - "This New Holland car is running good 
today. The last time we went out we put stickers (tires) on the car and I 
came up off of turn four and I just slapped the wall pretty doggone hard. We 
got back to the garage and just didn't have enough time to get back out 
there. In fact, it still has the two right side tires that I hit the wall 
with on it. We didn't hit it real hard, just enough to stop my momentum. But 
we'll take that lap. It was a good lap for us. My guys have done a heck of a 
job. I want to thank New Holland for coming on board with us this year. If 
they keep hanging with us we're going to be all right."

BILL ELLIOTT (#94 McDonald's Ford Thunderbird) - Qualified 15th - "We've 
struggled all week. Yesterday we had a motor mess up. We were going to do 
some qualifying runs so that kind of threw that out the window. This morning 
we had some other problems with a water pump and stuff. We never got a chance 
to go out and do what we needed to do. I knew I was better and I felt like 
the car was better than what I ran here today. Mike (Beam, crew chief) and I 
talked about it. We just wanted to get a good solid lap in and try to get in 
the race and then kind of work on it from there. I think everything that 
could go wrong has gone wrong but fortunately we have a good race car for 
this weekend. The McDonald's Ford will run good on Saturday."

DAVID GREEN (#96 Caterpillar Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 9th - "That's 
about what we ran in testing here. This weekend the guys have worked their 
tails off. We changed the motor and changed a little bit of everything. I 
always look at my practice times and if I can qualify just a tick better than 
I practice, I'm pretty happy. So today I've got a big smile on my face. 
Katech does our motors and we just had a little failure earlier with an oil 
pump. It wasn't the engine's fault. We missed the last fifteen minutes of 
practice. When I got the checkered flag that was the first lap that's been 
on this motor. The temperature was up pretty good so I killed it and I guess 
I killed it at the right time to make a big bang. That was a good lap. I hope 
that holds up. I guess it will for the first day so I'm pretty happy about 

WALLY DALLENBACH (#46 First Union Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 14th - 
"We missed it a little bit. We're real disappointed with that. That's the 
slowest we've run since we've been here. It just seems like we've been having 
a little bit of trouble with the track today. We changed a few things right 
before qualifying. We thought it would help it. We lost a little bit of 
overall grip. We'll worry about Saturday. We've still got a really good race 
car. This race car we made a lot of long race runs on when we tested here. We 
should be good Saturday."

RICKY RUDD (#10 Tide Ford Thunderbird) - Qualified 7th - "We're happy with 
that. We were a little bit tight when we qualified and a little bit tight in 
practice. We're really happy. This is a pretty intensified moment qualifying 
here. I was telling those guys on the radio, 'I'm glad that's over with.' 
More intense than Daytona 500 qualifying. We finished sixth here the last 
race but we had to struggle from the back to the front. We had some 
mechanical problems that we were able to come back and fix. This is by far 
the best race car I ever had here. So hopefully this thing will run up 
front. This Tide Ford has been pretty fast all week."

MIKE SKINNER (#31 Lowe's Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 6th - 
Crashed primary car during Wednesday practice. Qualified a back up car. 
- "I've got to take my hat off to this crew. They worked their tails off. I 
feel for the motor guys. They struggled on this qualifying motor and made the 
call to take that engine out right before qualifying. They said, 'That 
thing's blown up it just hasn't thrown anything out of it yet.' We cut the 
fenders up on the thing. We did everything humanly possible to that car to 
make it better. It's nowhere near the car that we had yesterday but I'm just 
glad it looks like we'll make the top twenty-five with that run. Now we can 
concentrate on the race. Richard (Childress, car owner) has a guy coming in 
the morning to put new fenders on it. The guys have done a great job calling 
pit strategy. We've struggled in the pits a little bit but the guys all want 
to race and they're going to get better and better and better. Hopefully I'll 
make us make less mistakes as we go through this second half of the year. I 
really hope we can do a little bit better. I've made a lot of mistakes and 
they've made some mistakes but this is a good race team. Richard still has a 
lot of confidence in us so we're going to keep on digging."

ROBBY GORDON (#40 Coors Light Chevrolet Monte Carlo) - Qualified 11th - "We 
layed the spoiler down in practice because the car was pushing a little bit. 
Maybe we shouldn't have done that. It got a little hot. It got a little 
slick. We were pretty loose in the corners. Pretty good effort for SABCO. 
What? Three cars in the top fifteen? The guys at the other shop are doing a 
pretty good job getting us some power. It's unfortunate that we qualified 
back 11th but Joe (Nemechek) did a good job. He's on the front row. We got a 
pretty good effort. That will lock us in on first day. Now we can work on 
race setup the rest of the weekend."